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Alpha1-antitrypsin and alpha2-macroglobulin in newborn infants

II. Relation to the coagulation system


The following tests were performed within the first week of life in 129 newborn infants: determination of alpha1-antitrypsin, alpha2-macroglobulin, antithrombin III, fibrinogen, prothrombin, accelerin, convertin and plasminogen. The newborns were divided into three groups: group (a), healthy newborns with a normal obstetric history (n=62); group (b), newborns without clinical signs of illness, but a complicated obstetric history (n=49); group (c), newborns suffering from various diseases (n=18). For statistical analysis correlation coefficients and t-tests were used. The mean values of the coagulation factors showed no significant differences between the three groups, but the standard deviation, was found to be markedly greater in group (c). This can be explained by higher production and an increased turnover of coagulation factors in these newborns.

Significant correlations were found between fibrinogen, prothrombin, plasminogen and the inhibitors alpha1-antitrypsin, alpha2-macroglobulin and antithrombin III.

According to this investigation the fibrin forming system and fibrinolysis are influenced by many complications in the newborn period. Alpha2-macroglobulin was found to be significantly reduced in 15 out of 18 sick newborn infants and appears to be a sensitive indicator for various coagulation defects. Alpha1-antitrypsin was reduced in infants with severe disturbances of the clotting system. Therefore, alpha2-macroglobulin and alpha1-antitrypsin may be useful for the determination of mild and severe coagulation disorders.

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Correspondence to U. Göbel.

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Göbel, U., Triebel, A., Petrich, C. et al. Alpha1-antitrypsin and alpha2-macroglobulin in newborn infants. Eur J Pediatr 129, 125–132 (1978).

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Key words

  • Blood coagulation
  • Newborn infants
  • Alpha1-antitrypsin
  • Alpha2-macroglobulin
  • Antithrombin III
  • Fibrinogen
  • Plasminogen